Mission Scrubbed!

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Driving to Ft. Meade — Before learning that the hearings had been suspended!

Detour en route to Ft. Meade!

Well, today didn’t turn out exactly as I had planned. I was scheduled to be at Ft. Meade tonight getting ready for the USS Cole hearings tomorrow and Friday.

I left Indianapolis today around 11:00 after a quick visit to the office to get a few last minute things wrapped up. I swung by the law school on my way out of town to pick up the HUGE briefing binder for the program. Just as a side note, my huge thanks for the group that put these together. I was reviewing my electronic version all weekend in preparation for the trip and it was extremely thorough and helpful. After picking up the binder I headed out of town on my 9 hour trip to Ft. Meade.

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To Pittsburgh

Generally the road trip was pretty uneventful and I was anticipating getting into my hotel near Ft. Meade around 9:00 PM. I made pretty good time and around 6:00 decided to stop in Morgantown WV for dinner and to check e-mails etc. During this break I learned from Kristi, who was the only one of the 4 of us who was able to attend today’s hearings, that there had been a bit of a change of plans. Apparently things went so smoothly and quickly today that they didn’t need the other two days for the open hearings, and the only things left to cover were classified so they would not be open to the public. Grrrreat. So after a few frantic calls, emails and texts we confirmed that basically we were done for the week (before I got started).

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Though I thought I was going to Ft. Meade today, I ended up in Pittsburgh instead!

At this point, being 6+ hours from Indy at 7:00 PM I wasn’t too pleased. Fortunately for me, I grew up in Pittsburgh and my parents still live there so I ended up backtracking about an hour and a half to my parents home in Pittsburgh for the night. At least I got to spend some unexpected time with them and I have an unexpected day on Friday to get some more work done at the office.

My next trip to Ft. Meade – June hearings in the 9-11 case (Khalid Shaik Mohammed)

Chuck Dunlap and parents he visited on an unexpected stop in Pittsburgh after GTMO hearings suspended.

Chuck Dunlap and parents he visited on an unexpected stop in Pittsburgh after GTMO hearings suspended.

While I am disappointed my first Ft. Meade mission got scrubbed at the last minute, I am still looking forward to the June 9-11 hearings, involving several men accused of masterminding the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon in September 2001.

This does make me think though of all the logistics involved with this and even in today’s digital society, why there are only a few limited sites to watch the hearings. It sure would have been easier if I could have just flipped on C-Span and watched from the comfort of my living room. I’m sure my very patient wife would have also appreciated me being home and able to simply watch it on TV as well.

All I can say is that I am hopeful that the June 9-11 hearings will turn out better for me!

Chuck Dunlap

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